Gang Starr feat. J. Cole — “Family and Loyalty”
DJ Premier announced the legendary hip-hop duo Gang Starr’s return this week. The surprise has been followed by a voicemail from Nas and, now, a new collaboration with J. Cole. As expected, the new track was produced by Premier and it features vocals from Cole and the late Guru.
Behind Preemo’s signature scratches, Gifted Unlimited Rhymes Universal raps about life lessons through ice. “Diamonds are forever like family and loyalty,” he raps. “Or real rap songs like ‘C.R.E.A.M.’ or ‘My Melody’ / Diamonds are forever like my infinite thought / Or respect in the hood that can’t be bought.”
Cole follows with a tribute of sorts. “Guru flows forever like a diamond and most / Could never afford the precious jewels,” he raps. “That’s precisely why I’m blessing you / With clearcut messages, I’m destined to / Invest in urban sections where depression rules / I hope to heel the destitute.”
Cole was a perfect fit for this single, according to Premier. “When it comes to this generation of emcees, ones that are lyrically on the level that Guru was on and someone that he would want to work with; Cole is that guy” Preemo said in a press release. “When Cole heard the record he got the chills and knew it was a classic.”
DJ Premier and Guru created a lasting impact with Gang Starr, one of hip-hop’s most beloved groups of all time. The widely respected duo released a series of critically acclaimed albums primarily throughout the ‘90s, including Step in the Arena, Daily Operation, Hard to Earn, and Moment of Truth. Guru reportedly passed away from cancer-related causes in 2010. He was 48.
DaBaby — “Intro”
DaBaby is re-introducing himself. The Charlotte rapper, who broke onto the scene with a series of viral singles this past year, is back with an “Intro.” Over DJ Kid’s production, Baby rhymes about the roller coaster of a year he’s had.
“I’m just somewhere fucked up, thinking about my father and shit,” he raps. “They found him dead a couple days before I started tour / Same day, I flew back to the city from Miami / I was out there with the family / Just looking at my daughter / Thinking to myself, ‘Damn, my baby look just like my daddy’ / Same time I got the news, my shit went number one / That’s fucked up.”
Since breaking onto the scene, DaBaby has been making a name for himself in the industry. He went viral with songs like “Walker Texas Ranger” and “Suge.” He’s also been featured on high profile collaborations, including Lizzo’s “Truth Hurts (DaBaby Remix),” Lil Nas X’s “Panini (DaBaby Remix),” and J. Cole, Lute, and Kendrick Lamar’s “Under the Sun.”
Learn more about the budding star on “Intro” below.
Skyzoo & Pete Rock — Retropolitan
Skyzoo and Pete Rock take fans back with their new joint project, Retropolitan. As the album title suggests, the new LP was inspired by a vintage sound that blew up from the East Coast to the world in the early ‘90s.
The legendary Soul Brother #1, who had a hand in that legacy, plays a pivotal role on this album both behind the boards and even behind the mic on “Truck Jewels.” Styles P, Raheem DeVaughn, Benny the Butcher, Elzhi, and Westside Gunn are featured guests on this 12-song project.
Sky recently spoke about the effort with Billboard. “It’s a New York album, but whether or not you’re from New York, you’re going to love it,” he said. “If you love hip-hop, lyricism, and incredible beats, you’re going to love what you’re hearing. [It’s] storytelling and production from a top-three producer ever, but it’s not dated. It’s just if the sound of the hip-hop we grew up on continued to be at the forefront and elevated.”
K. Michelle feat. City Girls & Kash Doll — “Supa Hood”
K. Michelle celebrates a “Supa Hood” love on a brand new collaboration. The reality television star/songstress joins forces with Kash Doll and City Girls’ Yung Miami for this new track, which was produced by Ronnie Jackson and Daniel Bryant.
“I love my niggas supa hood,” she raps on the hook. “I love my dick supa good.” Miami, who is currently expecting a child, adds: “Let ‘em hit raw, might give a baby to ‘em / I’m super crazy about ‘em, God know I love ‘em hood.” Kash takes the third verse: “If he ain’t a hood nigga, why bother?” she asks.
Fans can expect a video for the song soon, according to K. Michelle. “Supa Hood” is the “street single” off her forthcoming album, due to release through eOne. The project follows 2017’s KIMBERLY: The People I Used to Know.
Saweetie feat. Melii & Becky G — “My Type (Latin Remix)”
Saweetie continues pushing “My Type” with a brand new “Latin Remix” featuring bilingual stars Becky G and Melii. Over the London On Da Track instrumental, the Bay Area rapper and her Latin co-stars describe their types.
Becky flips the raunchy hook before jumping on a bilingual verse. “If you want me to choose, boy, you better have loot,” she sings. “Listen, this Latina ain’t fuckin’ with you.” Saweetie follows with a verse from the original before Melii adds her flavor: “I need a nigga that gon’ put me on a big jet / Big dick / The way he put it on me got me big wet.”
This “Latin Remix” could catapult “My Type” higher on the charts. After peaking at No. 21, the original is currently sitting at No. 30 on the Billboard Hot 100 with potential to grow based on these guests. Melii is a rising rapper who’s earned cosigns from Tory Lanez, A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie, and Meek Mill while Becky G is an immensely popular Latin star with widely celebrated songs, including two music videos that have reached more than 1.5 billion views apiece on YouTube alone.
Boosie Badazz & Zaytoven — Bad Azz Zay
Boosie Badazz and Zaytoven continue their camaraderie with a collaborative project in the form of Bad Azz Zay. The new offering features 13 tracks from the Southern duo, released via Badazz Music Syndicate/Familiar Territory Records.
“We going in the record books with this fuckin’ CD right here, boy,” Boosie says on the introductory “Elevation.” “You know what this is.” Later, he gets personal on songs like “Pray for Me.” “I’ve been going through it,” he raps. “Diabetes in my body, this some other music / Never fuckin’ with nobody, why you fuck with Boosie / Say a prayer before you tell me how you lovin’ Boosie / This that struggle music.”
It’s been a busy year for Zaytoven and Boosie. Zay released his Make America Trap Again compilation as well as his GloToven joint effort with Chief Keef this year. Meanwhile, Boosie unleashed his Bad Azz 3.5. Now, the duo join forces on Bad Azz Zay below.